About This Blog and Its Authoress

Heather McCormack is a 36-year-old recovering publishing cynic. Born and raised in Bismarck, ND, she moved to New York City in 1998 to begin her career in magazines and librarianship. After graduating from The New School’s MFA in creative writing program in 2003, she unwittingly began her first novel, The Nowhere in the Middle, then stopped because it dawned on her that nothing was more insane than writing a book in the 21st century, the age of Titanic Slush, the era of eight million voices coming at you like razor blades out of a nuclear potato gun.

My Twittah face...and by extension, my blogging face, Roman nose at the ready

To the point: With her discovery of Twitter, its small universe of librarian book sickos, and the obscenely optimistic voice of Richard Nash, that all changed. The bastard book is nearly finished (and a second about New York City in the 1970s and 1980s started), but there’s more to say. This blog chronicles the story of Heather’s first novel about exorcising your idols so you can build your own identity and attempts to quantify punk as it relates to her novel and philosophy. Complete with Writing Soundtrack and a punk rock bibliography (nonfiction and fiction). Holler back.


15 Responses “About This Blog and Its Authoress” →
  1. Heya, I just found your blog and I am completely blown away. I’m in my second year of university with aspirations of writing anything musical related (currently just finishing one essay on British Punk and one on Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash for my English degree) I have a massive obsession with “High Fidelity” and Blur and The Clash are my favourite bands so I felt incredibly compelled to write, after a truely terrible first year of university, I met my best friend who reintroduced me to The Clash and in Joe Strummer i found a real hero and the music proves to be a real comfort when i’m struggling with everything. It’s amazing to find someone who shares so much in common with me and is so successful and talented ❤ email me sometime xx

    • Hiya, Chloe of London. Oh, the wonders of the interwebs! The connections it fosters never cease to amaze me. Are you on Twitter? There’s a wonderful place to meet more of our kind. I’ll stop my comment there and drop you a proper email soon.


  2. Heya! just replied to your email, I’m not onTwitter actually, may have to get an account sometime. Actually meant to say i’m a History major at uni, doh! thanks for the lovely email 😀 xx

  3. By the way, If you ever need anyone to write guest spots for you, let me know 😀 xx

  4. Very interesting blog and life. One of the cool things about the internet is finding people all over the world that you never would have met back in the day. Glad to meet you Heather.

  5. Hi Heather,
    I really like your blog – good luck with your book! Did you know that Joe Strummer had a fabulous show on the BBC and you can download free episodes on iTunes at: http://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/joe-strummer-london-calling/id285877923

    Many thanks,

  6. Hiya, Graham. Yes, I have heard a couple shows. Got a few links up to them, but I appreciate the pointers to more. You a writer?

  7. Just saw a link to your blog via joestrummer.org and just wanted to say hello.

    I’m just a fellow fan, a documented mental defective (and quite possibly subversive in federal files somewhere) and most importantly, a fellow human being (aka savage) in this Brave New World…
    …with an often savage penchant for emotional outbursts, logical leaps, shamanistic visions, thirst-filled wandering in a spiritual wilderness, gonzo graphic artistry, shameless promotion of same High Weirdness and tangental musings on my irregular wp blog and the ultimate dream to fulfill The Great Commission of Joe: to “..bring humanity back into the ring for a while..”

    Oh…and one question: would you know of anyone in the Strummer/Mellor estate to contact regarding use of his name and quotations in the promotion (or naming) a venture devoted to propagating his ethos? I have info about my idea in my blog, buried somewhere near the beginning… I am hoping to get it off the ground and the only profit I seek is seeing it spread. It’s an idea I am willing to give to anyone who can get it off the ground and keep it going along its guiding principles. I just think changing the name to CafeStrummer (or something like that) might help it get more attention.

    I’m weird like that… 😉


    • Many thanks for reaching out, Shaun. Big hi back at you; good to meet a fellow Strummer fan. Though of Joe today as I was waiting in line at the pharmacy. The woman ahead of me had his exact birthday. Anyways, I would think Lucinda Mellor, Joe’s widow, would be the person to contact, and you could probably get in touch with her via the Strummerville foundation she founded after his death. I don’t have any direct contact with her. I chatted with a webmaster of sorts there. Nice bloke. That’s all for now. Hoping to infuse the blog with new life in July. Spring and summer have cooked me gulliver.

      • funny you mention the pharmacy… a week from last saturday i walked into the local walgreens and heard “london calling” on their muzak system… it was eerie to hear this apocalyptic thunderous warning in a corporate setting. i expressed my irritation to the cashier who chimed about how cool the song was. well, of course it is a cool song… but on corporate muzak? it just boggled the mind.

        in my travels on-foot during my pub crawl i later ended-up at a local dive bar in the last hour before last call (this town is full of them… wipe your feet on the way out) there was a loud screeching cacophony emanating from the stale beer soaked doors. there was a band playing hardcore punk that sounded a lot like die kreuzen. i waited til the set ended and commented on that. they were shocked that anyone in this desolate burg would have even heard of such a group. then came the stories of my former days as a fanzine publsher (all hand-made prior to copying, etc), my encounters with g.g. allin, rolllins and keith morris (as well as my snailmail correspondences and occasional chats with slapshot roadie hank pierce (now a uu minister in medford) , john sox of the straw dogs (formerly f.u.’s) and college radio days in 84-85… i felt like i went through some wormhole emotionally and was back in the 1980’s without a hot-tub to get me there!

        then as another bar closed, i ran into some random bar guy who was another 1984 grad of that town. he had just staggered out from the pub with his girlfriend who was complimenting me on my looks. yes, she was that drunk… the guy somehow mentioned joe and we were just both in tears of joy because it just seemed all too right that we would talk like that at such an odd time and circumstance. it seemed so random, yet the synchronicity was definitely in the air that night.

        high weirdness indeed. then The Fear set in and i wondered if there was some sort of dissociation going-on. i had to return to my adult mind, though the glee i felt was enough to keep me from sleeping for 2 days. it was a rush i hadn’t felt since the extremely unbearable august 1988 afternoon in a sweaty little rock club in cambridge where the only relief was in the form of rolling rocks stored in ice. oh, and seeing joe at the roxy club on his first tour with the mescaleros… which was my last time as well, sadly enough. but, by then i was that guy who f***ed nuns and later joined the church.

        death or glory is just another story.

        though i love what joe embodied, i’m sure he’d be saying “i appreciate your gratitude, but do *your* thing… i’m just a hack guitarist who wrote about what i saw… you got some brains of your own, so you do what you think your conscience urges you to do. and whatever you do, don’t let it get to your head or it’ll chew you up and spit you out like it did to me… it ain’t about me or you anyway. it’s about all of us”

        that’s what i hear him saying anyway…

        thanks for the little reminder of

      • Hiya again, Shaun. Joe’s always in the air, isn’t he? Though I find that level of finely balanced contradictions and influences is harder and harder to come by. Formula really seems to precede experimentation. It’s hard to tell the difference between all the pop tartlettes with all that Auto-Tune. I’m stopping there before I really get cranky.

    • Shaun, apologies for the late-ass response. Thanks for reading. I don’t know anyone personally who could help you with getting those permissions. I would suggest your contact the foundation his widow, Lucinda Mellor, set up in his name: http://www.strummerville.com/. I have chatted with one of their reps on Twitter (@_strummerville). Really lovely guy, so maybe they’d be helpful.

  8. Hi Heather,
    I was wanting to email you, but couldn’t find it around. Chad Olmsted has recently become a good friend of mine, and he told me about you. After following you on Twitter for a while, and seeing your work, I’ve seen your sense of humor and how easy it would be to make conversation with you… I am a writer, and I have several ideas waiting for me to write them – and one completed novel I have been trying to unload for a bit of time. Discouragement has been flirting with me all along. Chad said you might be able to help re-direct me, that you might be willing to write back and forth with me a bit, or have something to offer, additional resources – anything wise, really. I had decided to find an agent, but then have had a heck of a time gaining any representation! …That’s everyone, right? Anyway, I’d be happy to hear what you might have to say! Thank you so much!!

  9. Cool. I just found you, digging the political tweets, then found this. My own memoir, Never the Same Again: A Rock n’ Roll Gothic, came out in 2004. My band, the Skunks of Austin, may not have been big enough to get your attention, but we opened for the Clash (also Ramones, John Cale, many others) and they jammed with us after the show at our own gig. Anyway, just saying hello, and good luck with your book. Cheers, Jesse

    • Hello, Jesse, and thanks for taking the time to say hi. I am jealous, of course, of your resume, so to speak. Well known or not, you lived in some remarkable times for music. Hope you like my book upon completion.


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